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Surrounding regions of san diego

Apr 9th 2012 at 2:18 AM


San Diego isn't exactly famous as a city of neighborhoods, but they do exist in this support of suburbia. Despite its size, San Diego manages a calm atmosphere, offering the urban diversity of major cities, access to quieter suburban living, and the option to maintain a rural lifestyle in close proximity to employment centers. There are more than 100 neighborhoods in the county, offering many distinct unique cultures.



Hillcrest is known for its variety and provides many locally owned businesses, including galleries, cafes, bars, clubs and record and thrift stores. In comparison to many other surrounding regions, Hillcrest is a thickly populated area, though its streets are still lined with trees and parks. Every year, Hillcrest hosts CityFest, a street fair to celebrate community spirit with music, arts and crafts, a lantern parade and a rededication of the neighborhood's sign.

La Jolla

La Jolla, the surface of San Diego in which Sanford-Burnham's campus is located, is 12 miles north of downtown San Diego. La Jolla is home to Torrey Pines Mesa, a world-renowned center for life sciences. La Jolla pairs across miles of curving beaches and encompasses Torrey Pines State Park. The Park, which partially surrounds Sanford-Burnham, is home to the nation's rarest pine tree—the Torrey Pine—which grows only in this area. La Jolla also houses the waterway and Seal Rock and Children's Pool Beach, which surrounds one another and provide various activities from kayaking to snorkeling and seal-watching.


North Park

It is located to the northeast of Balboa Park. The most sprawling of the urban neighborhoods, North Park is a jumble. North Park is part of the 53rd congressional district. 30th Street and University Avenue is the junction of the north park and often considered to be the heart of the neighborhood.

Mission Hills

It is situated on hills just south of the San Diego River valley and north of downtown San Diego, overlooking Old Town and San Diego Bay. As you head west on Washington Street, Hillcrest turns into Mission Hills, and the aura becomes more fixed and low-key. With its grand homes with clean lawns and winding hilltop streets, Mission Hills is for the decidedly well-to-do, yet it doesn't have the exclusive aspect of La Jolla. Yes, I could picture myself living here.

University Heights

University Heights is located between Hillcrest and North Park. Similar in ways to both, it is a mix of Craftsman bungalows and apartments. Its small retail area is at the north end of Park Blvd. where it turns into Adams Ave. The area is filled with many numbers of restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques, and artist's studios primarily on Park Boulevard and Adams Avenue.

Normal Heights

It is sometime referred to as abnormal heights. Normal Heights is a neighborhood of the mid-city region of San Diego, California. Bookended on the west by University Heights and Kensington on the east, Normal Heights completes the Adams Avenue 'hood trifecta along the main drag. Crowded, diverse apartment dwellings on the south side of Adams, quiet single-family homes on the north side. It is known for its affordable pubs, restaurants, coffee houses, antique shops, book shops, and burgeoning arts community. Normal Heights has a high rate of pedestrian activity and a unique mix of nationalities related to the rest of San Diego. Three important surrounding area events take place in Normal Heights : The Adams Avenue Roots Festival, The Adams Avenue Street Fair, and Art Around Adams.

Little Italy

Little Italy has always been a neat ethnic area within downtown, but only in the past year or so has it become a real "cool" neighborhood, thanks to the addition of new condo highrises. Plus, the business district has been rennovated, including it's own nifty street-spanning neighborhood sign. For the best Italian food and a vibrant art scene, head just northwest of San Diego to Little Italy, a fishing town where small businesses, galleries and the Embarcadero attract tourists and locals alike.

Ocean Beach

Ocean Beach is more as a town within the city, but I would like to include it here because it has a little business district and it truly does have a surrounding area feel, albeit one excessive in the '60s and '70s. Ocean Beach was given its name by developers Billy Carlson and Frank Higgins in 1887. Ocean Beach has resisted gentrification, and for that it need to be commended. Because it wouldn't be ocean beach if it didn't have it's funky charm. The northern end of O.B.'s waterfront is popular as Dog Beach, alongside the channel that empties the San Diego River.

Golden Hill

With its once stately old mansions, quaint bungalows and apartment buildings, Golden Hill is enjoying a revival. On the southeast end of Balboa Park, Golden Hill has some fine views of downtown and pockets of really cool neighborhoods, like Burlingame. It is one of San Diego's most historic and architecturally eclectic zones.




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